Missouri Gov Calls Special Session to Stop St. Louis From Becoming a “Sanctuary City” for Abortion

State   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Jun 7, 2017   |   5:25PM   |   Jefferson City, MO

Missouri pro-life Gov. Eric Greitens promised to help protect unborn babies and moms from abortion, and he is working toward achieving that goal.

On Wednesday, Greitens announced plans to call back legislators for a special session to stop St. Louis from becoming a “sanctuary city” for abortions, the AP reports. The Republican governor said he also wants to see the legislature pass abortion clinic regulations that require annual inspections and other basic health and safety standards.

The St. Louis city abortion ordinance could force religious groups and individuals to hire abortion activists and rent to pro-abortion groups. In May, a pro-life maternity home, local business owner and the Catholic diocese in the area filed a lawsuit against the pro-abortion ordinance, saying it violates their constitutional freedoms.

Greitens promised to fight the ordinance in April.

Here’s more from Missourinet:

A bill filed in the legislature this year by state Rep. Phil Christofanelli, R-St. Peters, would have reversed St. Louis’s ordinance. The measure passed in the House but didn’t make it past the backlog of bills awaiting action in the Senate.

Days after the legislature’s regular session ended in May, a group of St. Louis Catholics filed a lawsuit challenging the city ordinance.

Greitens also wants lawmakers to pass annual safety inspections for abortion clinics, policies that such clinics must follow when a woman experiences health complications from an abortion and a fix that Greitens says will stop abortion clinics from interfering with emergency responses during health complications involving abortions.

Missouri Right to Life applauded the announcement in an email to LifeNews:

Missouri Right to Life is pleased that Governor Greitens has seen the urgent need to call a special session of the legislature to pass legislation to protect women, unborn babies as well as the religious liberties of faith communities from all denominations to prevent them from being forced to participate in abortion.

While these bills failed to pass during the regular session, Governor Greitens has stepped forward to bring them back for passage by the pro-life majorities in our House and Senate.

We look forward to working with Governor Greitens and the legislature during this call for a special session to pass pro-life protections for Missouri’s citizens and faith based communities.

After the announcement, Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser praised Greitens for making the health and safety of women and babies a top priority.

Follow LifeNews.com on Instagram for pro-life pictures.

“We thank him for calling back the Missouri state legislature to address the health and safety of women inside abortion facilities and to undo the chilling action taken by the city of St. Louis to declare the city an ‘abortion sanctuary,’” Dannenfelser said.

“The Greitens administration recently moved to enforce a longstanding law requiring abortion facilities to report abortion emergencies resulting in women being removed from the clinic by ambulance. Local pro-life activists in St. Louis have observed women being taken away by ambulance at least 66 times since 2009. Clearly, Gov. Greitens understands the urgency here and that the lives of women and children are on the line. We urge the state legislature to address these matters quickly,” she continued.

The mid-western state has been a hotbed of abortion politics in the past few years. In April, a federal judge granted Planned Parenthood’s request to block state abortion clinic regulations, arguing that they hurt women’s access to abortion. The laws require abortionists to have hospital admitting privileges for patient emergency situations, and abortion facilities to meet standards similar to other ambulatory surgical facilities.

The state regulations have helped to saved thousands of unborn babies’ lives since they passed in 2005. Many abortion facilities closed, dropping from seven in 2005 to two in 2014, because they could not or would not comply with the safety regulations. Abortion numbers also dropped steadily after the laws went into effect.

The Planned Parenthood in St. Louis currently is the only abortion facility in the state. It has developed a terrible reputation, sending at least 69 women to the hospital in ambulances since 2009, according to Operation Rescue. State inspection reports between 2009 and 2016 also showed more than 200 health and safety violations that endangered women’s health.

The Planned Parenthood in Columbia had to stop doing abortions in 2015 after its abortionist lost admitting privileges at a nearby hospital. However, the abortion chain said the judge’s ruling will allow it to reopen the facility and several others.

Gov. Greitens said they will appeal the judge’s ruling.

“Missouri is a pro-life state,” he said on Twitter in April. “We will beat this on appeal and keep fighting every day to protect the innocent unborn.”